FanHouse Celebrates Festivus With the Airing of Grievances
It's a Festivus for the restofus! The Back Porch staff decided to celebrate Festivus with the annual airing of grievances, as we tell everyone in sports how they have disappointed us over the past year.
Why? Because it made more sense than trying to take on professional athletes in the feats of strength. We've got a lot of problems with you people.
Everyone who thinks wins and losses define a starting pitcher or quarterback: You are all morons.
Jay Cutler, Lovie Smith and Jerry Angelo: You ruined my fall.
Milton Bradley and Jim Hendry: You ruined my summer.
Bobby Knight: I love you, man, but c'mon ... enough is enough. Go back to visit Indiana University where you are still revered. No one who had a hand in your firing is still involved in any decision-making at the University. Quit being so stubborn and pay us a visit. Please.
People who blame the downfall of society on player salaries: Newsflash, people, the extremely wealthy athletes make more money than product endorsements, not to mention the fact that entertainers (actors, musicians, artists) make much more money than athletes. If you don't like sports, fine, but quit complaining about the salaries without a little perspective.
The people who claim college football's "playoff system" is the regular season: How'd that work out this year?
Ben Roethlisberger and Eli Manning: With your "system Super Bowl wins" no one gives Phil Rivers any credit
George Shinn: Chris Paul would have played every season for the rest of his career in Charlotte and no one would be worried about Bobcats or Hornets' attendance you money-grubbing, impatient dirtbag
Tiger Woods: Thanks, guy. Now it's no longer "okay" for me to visit strip clubs
Hal Steinbrenner: It worked, you glorious bastard. Your brilliant "plan" of doing exactly what your dad did and spending as much money as possible and buying out all the best free agents available landed you a World Championship. And then you went out and spent more money in the worst economic era since the freaking 30's. And yet, I should theoretically applaud you, because what you're doing is capitalistic, American and it brings your fans great joy (something most owners aren't willing to do). But you're so indicative of the problems that baseball has allowed to emerge by not installing a salary cap and ripping the souls out of people like Pat Lackey and Gretz (multiple Super Bowl rings and Sid Crosby be damned!). Oh, and you are the leader of the Evil Empire. And I hate you.
Bud Selig: I don't know where to start with your sniveling, old, used-car-salesman, pathetic excuse for a Commissioner corpse, Bud. You've allowed steroids to run rampant in your sport, you let an All-Star Game end in a tie, you've screwed up the World Series and you've somehow managed to make America's past time increasingly less popular as the years have gone on. And now you're finally leaving but there's a 100% chance you won't cop to any of your failures on the way out.
Every Packers season ticket holder who bought a Brett Favre Vikings jersey and cheered for him this season: You can all rot in hell. I hope you sell your tickets to a preseason game next year, only to have the person you sold them to carry a knife into the stadium and stab three of your neighbors. That way, your season tickets are revoked -- because season ticket holders are held responsible for the behavior of whoever sits in their seats -- and given to someone who actually wants to cheer for the Packers.
Jeff Suppan: Stop stealing paychecks from the Brewers for throwing opponents batting practice during LIVE GAMES.
NFL Announcers: Stop pretending you know the rules. Hell, half the time, the officials don't know every nuance of every rule, as they've proven this season. You sure don't sitting upstairs in the warm press box.
Zygi Wilf: The Packers-Vikings rivalry has been great since before I was born. The intensity has been especially enjoyable over the last 10-15 years. Please don't ruin it by making selfish, unrealistic stadium demands and trying to drive this franchise out of Minnesota, where they have great -- if perhaps a little myopic -- fans. If the Twins and Gophers (football) can toughen up and move outside to play home games, so can you, especially if it saves the taxpayers up to a quarter-billion dollars off a stadium bill. Half your fanbase spends multiple weekends every fall sitting in trees looking for deer, no matter the weather. Stop acting like they can't handle a little snow or cold during Vikings home games.
Brett Favre: Your comment that Packer fans "can cheer for their team, I guess" was the height of arrogance, and you've done and said some arrogant things in the last four or five years. Please do Wisconsin a favor and stay away from it until you grow up. At that point, you'll get the hero's welcome you so greatly desire.
The BCS: Again. This time, we've amazingly been stripped of a chance to watch a team like Boise State rip through Iowa, or TCU try to shut down Georgia Tech's option. All because the Orange Bowl people had to sell tickets to Iowa fans. Oh, and there are five unbeatens. Who's to say the two you picked are automatically better than any of the other three? Meanwhile, fans were just treated to entertaining tournaments in Division I-AA, Division II, and Division III, none of which were won by the previously-anointed No. 1.
The Pittsburgh Pirates: For continuing to destroy what little interest I have in what was once my favorite sport. After a record 17th consecutive losing season, you people decided the best offseason moves, so far, would be to trade for a 30-year-old second baseman that simply isn't very good, and then signing a shortstop that is not only one of the worst regulars in baseball, but one that can't even stay on the field. If that wasn't enough, you flat-out released one of your most talented pitchers after one bad season then watched as no fewer than 12 teams lined up with interest in signing him. You're all failures.
The Big 10: For failing to come up with a workable alternative to Tresselball, thereby ensuring that the most boring variant of football imaginable remains the public face of the conference. Also for bringing expansion talk back to life, when we can all see how well expansion has worked for the ACC.
The Big 12 South: whose reaction to getting pantsed in the postseason last year was to drop trou again, only this time in September.
Tim Donaghy: For being completely recalcitrant in guilt despite (um) pleading guilty, for pointing the accusatory finger at ref who didn't bet from your lofty perch atop Hypocrite Tower, and for giving birth to a generation of neo-Cynic conspiratorialists ... all for a few book sales books. Screw you, Tim Donaghy.
NFL labor talks: I am grieved that there is a possibility that the NFL owners and players can't work out a new labor agreement. The NFL thrives because some of the original owners did things that were in the best interest of the sport in general, and not necessarily for their own teams. That they knew that a competitive league was one that would interest the fans. They better not @#$%ing screw it up.
ESPN college basketball coverage: Specifically, the in-game production decisions. Note to whomever produces these telecasts: STOP SHRINKING THE GAME ACTION TO SHOW ME WHAT KIND OF FACE THE COACH IS MAKING. I don't care. At all. In fact, it makes me want to change the channel. Other things I don't care about: seeing Doris Burke while she recounts a particularly poignant moment from team practice earlier in the week. My ears work fine; let her talk and KEEP THE CAMERAS ON THE COURT. Who thinks this is a good idea? Why take a 42-inch television and make it into two 12-inch televisions?
Jim Zorn: I'm not even a Redskins fan -- in fact, I despise them -- but it's hard to watch Zorn take an already inept offense and turn it into a Jason Campbell killing machine. Outside of those heady David Carr years with the Texans I've never seen an NFL quarterback take the beating Campbell has this season. And every time he crumples to the ground in agony, Zorn takes that as a sign that he should call another pass play. Or more specifically: hope that Sherm Lewis calls another pass play (or alternatively: the play gets the telephone game treatment from Lewis' lips to Campbell's ears and a run magically morphs into a pass). On the other hand, Zorn's "Fire me?! I'm firing myself!" proclamation in the form of the Swinging Gate almost makes up for two years of incompetence.
Jim Zorn: What Wilson said plus some. Why is it that every time I hear him talk or they cut to him on the sideline I get a feeling that he's confused about something. How in hell do we have a head coach who does not care about winning? If your team is lolly-gagging, YELL at someone. This is a man's game, so [man] up and at least act like you care. You play every crappy game so freaking close. If you have a 14-point lead, it does not mean you should waste a possession with the same sequence of plays: run right, run right, throw a dump-off pass on 3rd and long that comes up five yards short of the sticks. STUPID PLAY CALLING LEADS TO STUPID RESULTS. We have to get Zorn out of DC. HE SHOULD NOT BE, AND SHOULD NEVER HAVE BEEN A HEAD COACH.
Dan Snyder: Oh baby, now you got me started. First, accept the fact that you don't know anything about football and leave those decisions to people who know the game. You can't clean out the coaching staff EVERY YEAR and expect the team to build for the future. Then again, you brought in a QB coach with NO head coaching experience and no [gonads], made him coach after you fired (or were rejected) by all the better candidates. You deceive the people in your organization and go behind their backs. You don't care about the fans, sue and screw the season ticket holders, all so you can get richer. Look, Snyder, I get that you are an impatient fan with the money to bring about change, but why are you scouting players and making personnel coaches when you know nothing about those things?
The NBA salary cap: God, I hate the salary cap in the NBA as much as Tiger Woods loves brunette cocktail waitresses. The NBA salary cap isn't really a cap at all. It's an outdated, archaic and convoluted contraption that's been modified, messed with and messed up over the years. Designed to ensure big-market teams don't crush small-market teams because of the gaping chasm in revenue between the two hasn't done that because the system was undermined early. Realizing that the Celtics may need to let Larry Bird become a free agent, the Larry Bird rule allowed teams to go above the cap to sign their own free agents. Um ... Some cap, gents. You want exceptions, we got exceptions: the Larry Bird Exception, the Mid-Level exception, the Bi-Annual Exception (sounds dirty, but it isn't), and on and on and on. I'm not so naïve to think that the NBA isn't a business, but the business of the NBA has become too much of a focus on the league. The NBA is in a golden age of singular single-named talent – Kobe, LeBron, Wade, Durant -- yet most of the coverage – during the season, no less -- focuses on where that talent may end up playing and instead of how they're playing.
The salary cap puts the focus on the wrong place – off the court and in the front offices.
But the easiest reason way to show why I hate the cap is you can look at the scoreboard: 82-62. If you print out the NBA rule book, you'll have 62 pages. If you want to print out Larry Coon's invaluable Salary Cap FAQ, you would need 82.
That's frickin' nuts.
Obvious adjective creep: I'm looking at you (football) coaches and (football) analysts. "That's a good football team in that other locker room." "That was a great football game." "That was an amazing football play." Really? You know how I know it was a good (football) game? I'm watching frickin' football! I know you need to talk and I know you need to analyze and I know some producer is screaming in your ear to say something, but leave out the adjectives, specifically the obvious ones. Yeah, I know that was a good (football) team out there. I'm not watching you make muffins with Martha Stewart.
Oh, and you too (basketball) analysts. If I hear one more analyst say, "You need to score the basketball" or "they need to do a better job of rebounding the basketball," I'll find you and go batcrap Charles Oakley on you. What the hell else are you gonna score, you morons.